Chinx, formerly known as Chinx Drugs, was murdered in cold blood earlier this summer. What followed was his debut album Welcome To JFK, an ode to his home of New York City. Chinx was fatally shot in his brand new Porsche Panamera after a rap concert in Brooklyn. Sources allege that Chinx and a friend were followed to Queens where an unknown gunman took Chinx’s life. Chinx was protégé to Stack Bundles who was murdered in 2007. Most knew Chinx for his role in the Coke Boys, French Montana’s rap collective. Although this album is Chinx’s debut effort, it is unfortunately a posthumous album with loads of dark themes. Chinx’s untimely demise is a tragedy. He was only an album release away from reaching the stratum of superstar. Anytime you listen to a posthumous album, every bar resounds louder, because these words and verses and thoughts and themes were the last thing Chinx may have been thinking of.
On first listen, I expected this album to sound like a glorified mixtape. I was completely wrong in my expectations. Chinx took the time to make sure his album was a quality project. Packed with reality rap, tons of bass and the occasional R&B chorus give this album a very cohesive sound. Chinx only enlisted a handful of features, but every one added the right ingredient to his gumbo. Nipsey Hussle appears on “Hey Fool,” and the blend of west coast gangster and east coast hustler makes for a magical moment.
Chinx does not sound like a fake gangster or caricature. The Coke Boy affiliate’s voice is filled with conviction, and even his laid back style speaks to his persona. The song “Yay” is an upbeat moment where Chinx explains what he was doing before you heard of him. He maintains a fun, fast tempo while simultaneously tackling his hustling past. “Yay” is the perfect strip club song or radio single, but unlike most artists’ single attempts, we don’t lose sight of Chinx. He had a clear understanding of his persona and mastered mixing that persona with hit songs. Jeremih appears on the album on a song named “Thug Love”. You may expect a typical love song, but Chinx, again, makes the concept his own, and his Coke Boy persona is upheld even next to crooner, Jeremih. French Montana appears on the last song of the album, “Die Young”. Accented with grand piano keys and a somber chorus, we catch French and Chinx trading verses that illustrate the possibility of dying young. With Chinx gone today, this song is surreal.
It is hard to not like this album. The only complaint one may have is that, at only 12 tracks, the project is too short. Also, it is apparent that Chinx was just scraping the surface with stories of his street past. We never get any real insight on what happened to Stack, or his relationship with Max B, or how he found the Coke Boys. The album leaves you with just as many questions as you started with.
Chinx raps that he dreamed he was shot in the brain, so it’s clear he had an inclination that his end was near. My biggest problem with the album is, it makes me thirsty for his next effort. Welcome To JFK does a great job of introducing Chinx but this very well could be the only album we ever get from the fallen Coke Boy, and that is a travesty. Another issue with this album is that Chinx and French Montana rap styles are eerily similar. They literally almost sound exactly alike. However, Chinx‘s natual sound makes it tolerable, and, by the end of the album, you will be asking yourself if French adopted Chinx’s style.
Welcome To JFK has something for everyone. Chinx did not leave anybody out this time. For the ladies there’s “Don’t Mind Me,” “Thug Love,” “On Your Body.” Even “The Other Side” and “Yay” are street records ladies can vibe to. He has material for the hardcore street dudes with “Far Rock” featuring Stacks Bundles, “Pray” featuring Chicago rapper Lil Dirk or “Hey Fool” with Nipsey Hussle. Conspiracy theorists will love “Experimental” and “Die Young.” Chinx even added a song for the dreamers and entrepreneurs alike with the very creative cut titled, “How To Get Rich”. This is my personal favorite on the album, because Chinx elaborates on the notion that getting rich is something you have to work on, without looking for or expecting much help.
All this album does is display Chinx’s ability to be a contender in the mainstream. LONG LIVE CHINX!
Purchase and download Welcome To JFK by Chinx Drugs, here.
Born and raised in Washington DC, Nikki Mack began writing as a way to escape a pretty boring suburban life. Nikki Mack is an avid reader and self-proclaimed recluse and is currently working tirelessly on an urban fiction novel.